Sharon Sugerman, MS, RD, FADA, FAND
Sharon Sugerman, MS, RD, FADA is Research and Evaluation Program Director for Public Health Institute’s Center for Wellness and Nutrition. In addition to oversight of Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program Education (SNAP-Ed) evaluation, she develops and oversees evaluation projects in worksite wellness and tribal community health. With 25 years of research and evaluation experience; she has conducted research on SNAP-Ed evaluation, California fruit and vegetable and sugar sweetened beverage consumption, women’s health, immigrant health beliefs, dietary assessment measures, Hispanic food and shopping habits, and community-based cancer prevention programs.
Sugerman is a contributing author to the development of the Western Region SNAP-Ed Evaluation Framework for Nutrition, Physical Activity, and Obesity Prevention Outcomes and serves on the Produce for Better Health Research sub-committee.
Prior to her PHI work, Sugerman worked as a senior research nutritionist for Westat, sharing leadership responsibilities for a series of methodology studies for improving national dietary monitoring surveillance. She has also worked as a research nutritionist on a number of community-based chronic disease risk reduction interventions designed to reach African-American and Latino populations.
Sugerman earned an M.S. in rehabilitation psychology from the Illinois Institute of Technology and an M.S. in nutrition and medical dietetics from the University of Illinois Chicago.
Administrative and Programmatic Support for Nutrition and Physical Activity Programs
Poor diet and physical inactivity are among the leading causes of preventable death in California and play a major role in a host of chronic diseases and health-threatening conditions, such as cancer, heart disease, diabetes and obesity. Since 1986, PHI has joined with the Cancer Control Branch of the California Department of Public Health at the forefront of statewide efforts to increase the number of Californians who eat healthful diets and do regular physical activity. Under this grant, PHI staff is to continue to provide leadership and ongoing development for the Network for a Healthy California and the California 5 a Day Plus Physical Activity Campaign, including its programs targeted to children, Latinos, African-Americans and low-income families.
Growing Healthy Farms, Healthy People: Our Shared Future Western Growers Assurance Trust Wellness Initiative Demonstration Project
The Center for Wellness and Nutrition is funded by Western Growers Assurance Trust to enhance the competitiveness and profitability of members and to lead members, worksite employees and the fresh produce industry toward a healthy, sustainable and profitable future by implementing evidence-based worksite wellness programs. Activities will occur on an ongoing basis over 18 months, guided in each site by an employee wellness committee.
Impact Evaluation Study for the Network for a Healthy California's Latino Campaign
The Network for a Healthy California Latino Campaign is a multi-channel social marketing campaign that uses tailored, focus-group tested materials and a variety of methods to empower low-income Latino adults and their families to consume fruits and vegetables and exercise every day. The Impact Evaluation Study for the Latino Campaign is a quasi-experimental study. Pre and post-intervention measures include campaign exposure and recall, change in fruit and vegetable consumption, physical activity behavior and related psychosocial constructs.
Media Benchmark Survey
The Network for a Healthy California develops targeted social marketing campaigns, mass media messages and resources for U.S. Department of Agriculture's Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program participants and other low-income Californians. The Benchmark Survey evaluates campaign recall, assesses the relationship of dietary and physical activity practices relative to media exposure and psychosocial determinants, and examines knowledge, attitudes and beliefs towards diet and physical activity.
Michigan Harvest of the Month (MiHOTM) Point-of-Access Evaluation
The Michigan Fitness Foundation collaborates with diverse community partners to implement the MiHOTM program in grocery stores, farmers’ markets, community gardens, and food pantries reaching low-income populations in Michigan with nutrition education and resources. Quasi-experimental designs assess the impact of the MiHOTM point-of-access pilot programs in retail and food pantry settings. Evaluation measures include shopper survey, in-store scan, showcase observation, store manager/director survey, food panty participant intention card/survey, and food pantry staff and nutrition educator interviews.
Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program Education
Over 15 years, the Center has partnered with the California Dept. of Public Health's Nutrition Education and Obesity Prevention Branch to provide management, program support, evaluation and implementation of the nation's largest, most diverse nutrition and physical activity initiative. It has helped create partnerships empowering low-income Californians to increase fruit and vegetable consumption, physicial activity and food security.
Toiyabe Indian Health Service PICH and REACH CDC Division of Community Health grants
Each of these grants, which both run from FFY 2015 through FFY 2017, funds a variety of community wellness projects. PHI is funded as the evaluation contractor for both grants. Each of the grants requires two types of evaluation: one actual use evaluation and one or more outcome evaluations. The projects selected for evaluation include development of walking/biking paths in three tribal areas, planting a school garden with concurrent implementation of a school garden curriculum in five schools in grades K-2, and market match for fruit and vegetables to increase access in three farmers’ markets.